Have you seen the recent viral video going on about the foreigners dancing on a wall at City State Mosque of Kota Kinabalu? Do you wonder why everyone seems offended by it?
After all, some of you may claim it as an innocently harmless activity of dancing. However, the truth is the mosque is the religious place of the majority Malaysian Muslims. Modesty is something the religion often values.
This episode also brought to mind the 2015’s incident on top of the Mount Kinabalu, where a group of foreign tourist thought it would be fun to pose in their birthday suits. Worse, they were also accused of urinating as they scaled the mountain.
Weeks after the series of photographs became viral, an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.9 shook the state and killed 18 people. And of course, the locals blamed the foreign tourists for causing the gods to be angry.
Now, the tourists and tour operator in the recent incident will only be fined as a reminder once they are identified. However, we should really bear in mind that different countries have different customs. You wouldn’t want to offend anyone in your ignorance. Even worse, you may find yourself facing persecution by the local authorities.
Now, SINI KAKI has listed out the things you should not do why travelling to these countries:
First, on the list, you must not tip while in Japan. It’s considered a degrading action in the Land of Rising Sun.
Likewise, don’t go into people’s homes with shoes on. Notably, don’t stick your chopsticks vertically in your bowl of rice. For them, this resembles a funeral ritual.
Secondly, don’t smile at strangers in Russia. They will take it as an insincere gesture. The reason is smiling is said to be an intimate gesture here.
Moreover, never whistle indoors, it’s bad luck for the Russians. And it’s uncivilised to lick food of your knife too.
Next, you are not to use your left hand when travelling in India. Local cultures dictate that left hand is unclean. So remember to use your right hand to pay money, hold items, eat food and everything else! Well in most Asian countries, right hand is preferred rather than the left.
For your information, having Indian Gods tattoos are not cool at all here! An extra note will be not to touch anyone of opposite sex while you’re here.
Bear in mind when you eat in China, don’t finish your food! Wiping clean off your plate indicates that the host didn’t provide enough food or a filling meal.
Furthermore, always put up a fight before letting someone else pay the bill. What is more, never give anyone umbrella or clock as a present. It’s extremely bad luck.
If you ever have the chance to drive in the Nordic country, don’t use the honk unless it is emergency. You’ll cause unnecessary panic among the local drivers if you honk without reason.
Other than that, don’t ever bargain as prices are considered as fair here. What is more, never ask about churches here as it’s a sensitive topic here.
Subsequently, always greet everyone you meet in France with a hello. Master this “Bonjour Madame, Monsieur” or else, a French may think you subtly feel that he or she is beneath you.
Also, don’t blow your nose in the public, it’s repulsive. Lastly, never speak loudly in the public!
Over in this part of Asia, never eat the last piece of food remaining on the table. Of course, unless someone else offers it to you, if not, restrain yourself! Moreover, do remember to respect the elderly whilst you’re in the Philippines.
Never make negative remarks on the Filipinos too, especially over the Internet! And always remember to respect the elders.
If you are travelling to this multi-cultural and multi-religious country, never ever point your finger at anything or anyone. Use your thumb instead!
Remove your shoes as well before entering anyone’s homes and most religious worship places. Also, call before you visit someone’s house as well.
For the Germans, it’s considered to be rude if you keep your hands inside your pocket while talking.
Additionally, don’t wish anyone happy birthday before the actual birthday, it’s unthinkable for the Germans.
And never do the Nazi gesture or have the symbol, you could be arrested for it.
Don’t litter, don’t spit and don’t drink alcoholic drinks in public. In addition, don’t feed birds nor eat in public transportation.
You wouldn’t want to be burdened with fines while in this country.
Now, whilst you’re here, don’t use the OK sign. It’s deemed a rude gesture by the locals.
Still, learn to not refuse gift but also don’t accept any gift immediately. Alas, try not to drink too much while you’re here too.
On another note, avoid carrying alcohol openly in public while you’re in Dubai.
Bear in mind that you have to switch off all music and noise during the five daily prayers. What’s more, never drink, smoke or eat in public during Ramadhan. It’s the fasting month.
13. UNITED KINGDOM
Yet another popular tourist destination, being a tourist here means you don’t jump the queue here.
And don’t even ask anyone how much they earn. On top of that, never ever eat off your knife!
Finally, just remember to follow these simple manners and respect the local cultures. You’ll then certainly have a great trip!